Reshi decided to write a story using the artificial intelligence of ChatGPT and Midjourney. After posting her result, she was flooded with hateful comments.
Ammaar Reshi was reading a bedtime story to her friend’s son, 72 hours later she was able to publish “Alice and Sparkle”, her book written and illustrated by an artificial intelligence, for free.
Impressed with the results, Reshi shared the experience on Twitter, garnering over 2,000 comments and 5,800 retweets. First positive reviews appear, then, under Reshi’s post, a real war begins.
The story of “Alice and Sparkle”
It all starts with a children’s fairy tale, telling the story of Alice and her friend Robot Sparke, Reshi used the new OpenAI chatbot, ChatGPT and Midjourney, to write and illustrate. Not only him, even in Italy the Roy Ming collective experimented with AI to write a fairy tale. Many are playing with new technologies. Reshi, satisfied with the result, then decided to publish it on Amazon, give it to the children of his friends, publish the success on social networks, and then something went wrong.
“At 4 am I woke up to my phone exploding, every two minutes with a new tweet saying things like ‘You’re a scum’ and ‘We hate you,'” Reshi explained. The rest of him was just an experience to share with friends, but it was the start of a Twitter uprising.
The problem with new AIs
Reshi’s book strikes a chord. Increasingly powerful artificial intelligence is considered a threat. Some see the beginning of the end of all white-collar intellectual work and see the chatbot as a harbinger of mass unemployment. However, the first to point to tools like Midjourney or ChatGPT are artists.
For many, these are real robberies. To work, the AI must be trained with large amounts of data, including artists’ works downloaded from the web and sent to Dall-E, Midjourney or ChatGPT without their permission. Users can also enter an artist’s name at the prompt, for example, to create a description “in the style of”.
For example, Lensa AI, which generates “Magic Avatars”, i.e. user selfies turned into works of art, is at the center of the debate. Australian artist Kim Leutwyler accused the app’s developers of allowing the algorithm to exploit and copy their own artistic style: “When I started seeing all these photos generated by the Lensa app posted by some of my friends, even by other artists, I immediately doubted,” Leutwyler told the Guardian. “Some works are clearly related to the works of other artists. »
“I didn’t read about the issues,” Reshi said. “I realized that Lens is actually the cause of all this by being a very mainstream app. He spreads this debate and I only get hateful comments about him. »
“I was just shocked and honestly I didn’t really know how to handle the situation. Among the nasty messages, Reshi explained that she also read reasonable comments that accurately explained what the real problem was. “These are the people I want to interact with,” he emphasized, “I wanted a different perspective. I think it is very easy. to get out of the bubbles of San Francisco and Silicon Valley, where you think these artificial intelligences are making great strides, so I’d love to hear from everyone who thinks differently. »
The second tweet
After reading and listening to the issues listed below, his tweet Reshi added, “I think artists should be involved in creating AI image generators and their talent, skills and hard work to achieve results are should be respected”.
He also explained that all the hateful comments were wrong, his was a one-time project. In fact, Reshi explained that he never claimed authorship of the book. “I wouldn’t even call myself an author,” he says. “The AI was basically the ghostwriter and the other AI was the illustrator. He just spent hours tweaking Midjourney’s suggestions to try to get consistent artwork.
Amazon suspended sales of Reshi’s book from January 6 to 14, due to “suspicious review activity” associated with review volumes ranging from one to five stars.
Some people actually criticized the quality of the book’s writing and illustrations. “The writing is stiff and voiceless,” read one of the Amazon comments. “And the art – wow – so sick. Tangents everywhere, odd fingers on every page, and inconsistencies to the point where it feels like these images are just a cut above chance. »
Half the experience
Reshi comes out bruised by the experience, explaining that he won’t be releasing a new picture book, but is still interested in trying out AI. “I use ChatGPT, for example,” he explains, “so far there seem to be fewer concerns with content ownership than with AI image generators. The goal of the book, he adds, is always to give it to children of his friends, “we both liked it, it worked with the people I wanted to tell, and it was incredible”.